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Gun control debate

Linn Meyers, 48 of DC, cries and she listens to stories of the 49 people killed in the mass shooting in Orlando. She has not been active in the movement before, but the huge loss of life, moved her. A diverse coalition of groups and activists held an overnight peace vigil in front of the National Rifle Assiciation's (NRA) offices in Fairfax, VA to honor the 49 people killed in the mass shooting in Orlando. They called for a ban on assault weapons. (Sarah L. Voisin/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Gun control debate

The U.S. Senate on June 20, 2016, rejected four measures restricting guns after last week’s mass shooting in an Orlando nightclub, although lawmakers were still trying to forge a compromise that could keep firearms away from people on terrorism watch lists.

In a familiar setback for gun control advocates, all four of the measures to expand background checks on gun buyers and curb gun sales to those on terrorism watch lists - two put forth by Democrats and two by Republicans - fell short of the 60 votes needed for passage in the 100-member chamber.

The deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history last week had intensified pressure on lawmakers and spurred quick action, but the gun-control measures lost in largely party-line votes that showed the lingering political power in Congress of gun rights defenders and the National Rifle Association.

Republicans and their allies in the NRA gun lobby said the Democratic bills were too restrictive and trampled on the constitutional right to bear arms. Democrats attacked the Republicans’ plans as too weak. (Reuters)

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